We told you months ago how we were actually excited by the prospect of a Starship Troopers reboot, because it meant we might get a Troopers movie that hews closer to Heinlein’s novel. Sure, the Verhoeven flick was entertaining in a cheesy way, but any resemblance between it and the book was most likely coincidental. Now one of the producers of the new Starship Troopers film has detailed another way the remake will set itself apart from the 1997 version: it will be considerably less violent.
Verhoeven is known for laying on the gore in his films (“Give the man a hand!”), and Starship Troopers was no exception. Speaking to Empire magazine, producer Toby Jaffe says that the decision to tone down the violence is partly so the film can aim for a lower rating, something that is important to studios on expensive pictures. He cites the Total Recall remake, which he is also producing, as an example: “With Recall in particular, we made a conscious choice to keep it tonally closer to something like Minority Report. It gives the studio, and us as producers, the opportunity to reintroduce it in a new way.”
While a toned-down Troopers might cause some fans to bristle, I don’t think extreme violence is the most important quality needed in a remake. There are plenty of war films that have treated their subject matter with respect and honesty without resorted to a constant blood bath. I’m more concerned with Troopers bringing Heinlein’s story to life than I am about it trying to one-up Verhoeven when it comes to grisliness.
There are two bits of news from the interview that may make fans more optimistic. First, the remake is said to be abandoning the satirical tone of Verhoeven’s movie in favor of a more straight-up adaptation. Second, and even more exciting, is that the remake will include one of the book’s most iconic elements: the powered armor known as Jump Suits. Jaffe says, “Working in a visual-effects renaissance as we are, we have the ability to do so much more now. We can do the Jump Suits, for example, which I don’t think they could have done before.”